Sunset Pano

Source: Sunset Pano

Flickr – becoming more about controlling you.


Last year I vigorously complained that the Flickr was routinely featuring photographers who were blatant Contact Collectors. This was made patently clear in the 2015 selections for “Flickr’s Top-25 Photos in 2015” where many of the featured photos were from accounts with more the 50,000 follows and followed.

This years annual feature is called “Top Flickr Photos from 2016“. While Flickr has finally taken action against many contact collectors an odd pattern to those featured was noted again this year. This is what Flickr says they used to determine the selections for 2015:

To compile this list, we started with an algorithm that calculates a combination of social and engagement metrics, e.g. how often the photo had been faved and viewed. To avoid the results being merely a popularity contest, the selection also involved curation by Flickr staff.

This is what they said for this year selections…

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Connected Autotags and Search


I have noted an odd issue with the way autotags appear to affect search results.

Many autotags have a hierarchal structure. For example to get the TULIP autotag you first have to get FLOWER and to get FLOWER you have to first get PLANT. Similarly, to get the POODLE autotag you first have to get the DOG autotag and prior to that you need ANIMAL.

When you do a text search on ANIMAL or DOG the relevant results typically offer images with high social activity. However, when searching for POODLE, the relevant results offer mainly older images with low social activity. This pattern is noted with PLANT, FLOWER and TULIP as well, as it is with many of these autotag groupings.

Why would high social activity make animal and dogs relevant but low social activity make poodles relevant? Having different algorithms makes perfect sense but not within one hierarchal structure.

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